The Truth About Botox

I don’t know if I’ll ever get Botox or fillers or any kind of injection. Right now I’m not sure it’s something I want to do, but never say never.

When it comes to Botox and injectables, I had a ton of questions, reservations and some preconceived notions. To be honest, I didn’t know that much about them in general – the pros, the cons, what they can really do for you, what to expect and all that, so I sought out some information from a clinic in Calgary, Canada.

I was fortunate enough to sit down with Jodie and Lisa from PHI Medical Aesthetics and they told me everything I could ever want to know about Botox, fillers, and everything in between. These ladies have 15+ years of experience in cosmetic injections and plastic surgery so they really know their stuff. I asked a ton of questions and here is some of what I learned:

Let’s Talk About PHI + Why

What is PHI and what is the significance of their clinic’s name? Why does it matter and what do injectables have to do with it? Well, I asked Jodie and Lisa and they were more than happy to tell me!

What is “Phi”? Phi is the 21st letter of the Greek alphabet and its symbol its symbol resembles a circle with a dividing line through the middle. Phi represents what is known as the “golden ratio” which is a mathematical ratio of 1 to 1.618. These golden proportions can be found everywhere and in everything we see: in architecture, in design, in nature in the symmetry of flowers for instance, and we commonly see and use PHI dimensions in facial structure.

What does “Phi” have to do with beauty? The face has multiple measurements that the eye sees, and the closer those dimensions are to the Phi ratio, the more aesthetically pleasing you are to the human brain. The optimal proportions for your face would be 1 wide : 1.618 tall. Your lip proportions would be 1 : 1.618 for your top to bottom lips.

Where do injectables enter into the concept of “Phi”? Not everyone is born with exact phi proportions in their face. What injectables can do is provide a balance to give you more of these phi dimensions in a non-surgical way.

What I want to note here is that PHI‘s approach to injectables isn’t to make you look fake or like you have a plastic face (we’ve all seen botched jobs and no one wants to look like a ‘Real Housewife’). What PHI believes in is very natural treatment that offers subtle enhancements. It’s more about slowing the clock, pressing pause and even looking more rested.

Let’s Talk About Botox, Baby!

My biggest questions were of course about Botox. Botox is probably one of the most commonly known injectables on the market and is the #1 treatment offered at PHI. PHI only uses brand name Botox, which is an important distinction – this way you know exactly what you’re getting.

It’s safe for almost anyone (avoid while pregnant/breastfeeding or if you have an auto-immune disease, etc.) and comes with a number of advantages. It’s one of those things that is slowly losing its stigma but chances are you know more women who’ve had it done than you realize!

Botox Procedure, PHI Medical Aesthetics Calgary, botox info, truth about injectables, cosmetic procedures

What is Botox? Botox is a neuro-modulator. What it does is it stops the contracting of the muscles in which it is injected.

When should someone start getting Botox treatments? There are two main reasons people get Botox – for corrective treatments (i.e. when you start noticing signs of aging) and for prevention (you can look at your genetics and probably determine when aging is going to set in). The reason that people are looking towards preventative Botox is because it is much easier to maintain because less damage has occurred that needs to be corrected.

How long does Botox last? Botox treatments last for about 3-4 months depending on the patient, and in order to maintain the desired result, it requires recurring treatments.

Where should you have Botox done? Go to an injectables clinic! I know that Botox is offered at some doctor’s offices (general physicians) and dentists’ offices, however, when it comes to injectables I suggest seeing someone who does this all day, every day. This isn’t something I would opt to have done by someone who does this ‘every once in awhile’ when I could have it performed by someone who is a total pro at this.

I’ve had Botox…now what? Botox is a recurring treatment and your treatment provider will be able to tell you how long you should go between treatments. This doesn’t mean that you aren’t left with some homework of you own, though! Some people believe that because they go for Botox treatments it means that they can throw caution to the wind and stop using skin care altogether rather than protecting your investment (i.e. if you’re careless, you’re going to require a lot more correction in the future).

It’s recommended to use medical grade skin care products, stay out of the sun and always wear sunscreen. Recommended brands include ZO Skin Health and SkinMedica (both available at PHI Medical Aesthetics). These are the top two brands in North America, have stood the test of time and have a lot of science behind them.

I’ve heard of ‘Bro-tox’ – what is it? It’s really a cute way of dubbing ‘Botox for Men’. Did you know that 10% of PHI’s clients are men? Yes, men! Men are starting to use Botox for both preventative and corrective measures. They’re also using Dermal Filler to provide them with a more pronounced jawline and chin.

Dermal Fillers + What They Can Do

Dermal Fillers are the second most popular treatment offered at PHI and provides some really impressive results. PHI offers five different brands of dermal fillers in their clinic which allows them to offer the right treatment to each patient.

Dermal Fillers Procedure, PHI Medical Aesthetics Calgary, botox info, truth about injectables, cosmetic procedures

How long do Dermal Fillers last? Dermal Fillers last approximately 12-18 months and for 9 to 12 months for lips and cheeks (depending on each patient).

What can Dermal Fillers do? Fillers can be really helpful in adding more phi dimensions to your face in a non-surgical way. We’ve all heard of lip and cheek injections, but consider filling in sunken in temples or brightening tear troughs for a more youthful and vibrant look. There’s even the option of a non-surgical rhinoplasty that could help boost someone’s confidence.

Many men are turning to Dermal Fillers for a more pronounced chin or jawline. No more hiding behind facial hair!

Other Treatments Offered at PHI

Botox and Dermal Fillers are the most popular treatments at PHI but it’s worth noting a few of the other services that they offer that I thought were quite interesting. PHI isn’t a clinic that just about getting rid of wrinkles!

Belkyra: This is a permanent treatment for chin fat; a great way to get rid of that double chin without requiring surgery.

Belkyra Procedure, PHI Medical Aesthetics Calgary, botox info, truth about injectables, cosmetic procedures

Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP): This is also commonly known as the “Vampire Facial”. What this treatment does is stimulates your production of collagen & elastin via the concentration of the growth factors that are injected back into your skin. This treatment is commonly done on your face, neck and décolleté. This process is also used for hair restoration with great results.

Platelet Rich Plasma, PHI Medical Aesthetics Calgary, Vampire Facial

Sculptra: A process that lays down a type of lattice work in the face, that encourages collagen production to correct volume loss and signs of aging.

Radiesse: A non-dissolvable filler that is commonly used on hands and jawlines.

My Experience at PHI

Full disclosure, I went into PHI with an open mind because I really did want to learn about Botox and other treatments from professionals. I immediately loved the vibe and feel of their office – upscale and approachable at the same time. They showed me all of the different treatment rooms and then we sat down to chat.

I didn’t feel like any question was off limits – they were happy to answer anything that I asked and addressed any concerns or pre-conceived notions that I had about Botox, fillers or facial treatments in general. I also never felt judged or like they were analyzing my face for all of the things they would inject or change about my appearance (and I was suffering from morning sickness so I looked that day!).

I genuinely felt like they were providing services to help people feel their best in their own skin. They’re not just one of those clinics that will inject you with whatever, either. Like I mentioned above, they are cautious about the products they use, who uses them, how they are administered and they don’t go overboard. They’re also always on top of new tech in the industry and their collaborative and supportive team culture ensures you’re getting the right treatment every time.

If Botox, fillers or any of the treatments mentioned above are of interest to you, I highly suggest checking out the info on PHI’s website and even booking a consultation appointment to see what might be right for you.

References: Photos curtesy of PHI Medical Aesthetics

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Carlee Krtolica
Carlee Krtolica


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